I graduated from Spring Arbor University in 1996. I taught one year of 5th grade at Light and Life Elementary School in Taylor, Michigan. For two years I taught 3rd grade in Mio, Michigan. In 1999, I joined the teaching staff here in Stockbridge. I have taught 3rd grade at Smith and Heritage Elementary schools until the fall of 2005, when I made the switch to being the music teacher.
I am married to Josh Nichols who also teaches at Heritage Elementary. We live in Pleasant Lake and have two children. Our son Sam is 7 and our daughter Molly is 3.
I have always loved music. I began playing the piano when I was six years old. I was involved in choirs and musicals for many years as a child and teenager. I still enjoy playing the piano, going to concerts, broadway musicals, and listening to different music.
I enjoy teaching music to students. We do more than just learn about tempo, note counts, different instruments, etc. We have so much fun discussing what music means to us and how it has helped so many people express their feelings, reach out to others, and make careers as musicians.
I believe that music education is important not only because it is mathematical, and one of the "Multiple Intelligences", but because it is a language. Writing music, singing songs, listening to songs, etc. is the way many people communicate their feelings. Our students have spent time this year listening to slave songs, early jazz, classical, and folk music that tell stories of hopes for freedom, feeling sad about The Great Depression, losing loved ones in the war of 1812, and being frozen for 100 years and waking up to a totally different world. Our students are learning that music is a language and not just some cool beats with great rhymes.
I look forward to meeting the next group of students who will attend Heritage Elementary in the fall of 2006. It is exciting to learn about their talents and what kind of musical interests they have.
Have a great summer! See you in the fall.